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Comment Re:All too true (Score 2) 233

Videogame programmers care *very much* about all these sorts of performance issues. Not coincidentally, many videogame programmers use custom containers, and nearly ALL of them use custom allocators for exactly this reason.

That being said, not everyone programs real-time pseudo-simulations like we do. But you should very much care about ensuring the most basic building blocks of code everyone uses are highly optimized at the very least. The more often code is called, the more attention should be paid to ensuring its as optimal as it should be.

I'd be curious to hear MS's response to these issues. It could be that there were some deliberate reasons for the choices made, or possibly some unintended consequences to the solutions offered, but it's hard to say without a fairly deep knowledge of the STL internals MS uses (based on Dinkumware, I think?)

Comment Re:Leave the original (Score 2) 542

Starship troopers is a fantastic movie.

It was a terrible movie that had a few cool action scenes. For the record, I'm not a movie snob (some mindless action can be fun) and I'm not much of a fan of Heinlein as an author (early stuff is decent, but his later works are horrid). I watched the movie before I read the book, so I had NO initial biases. And when I eventually read the book, I remember thinking "shit, why didn't they make *this* into a movie?"

From what I can remember, one of my beefs was the casting, which seemed to place more emphasis on finding impossibly good-looking 20-somethings than creating interesting characters, and getting said female members of the cast naked as often as possible. Nothing wrong with that, but it didn't fit the tone of the movie. The movie-version military apparently felt it was appropriate to use WWI-style mass infantry charges against their enemies. Do they not have armor in the future (in the book they sure do)? WTF? But worse than anything, the dialog and plot just seemed to fall flat to me.

I'm aware of the differences between film and books. For instance, I loved the Lord of the Rings re-interpretation as a movie, even if quite a few things differed from canon, so you certainly couldn't call me a "purist". I think that's because I felt the LOTR movie was an appropriate homage to the original story and universe, even if some things differed. I just don't see that you could say that about Starship Troopers.

Comment Re:And so it begins... (Score 1) 407

"Routinely?" Robots have been working in factories for decades now, and these sorts of deaths are rare enough to make headlines.

How many people were killed in automobile accidents yesterday in the US? Dozens, probably. Dozens more will probably die today. Some perspective is needed here.

This will hopefully lead to some new, better safety precautions, like ensuring ANY robots within potential reaching distance must be shut down. This either wasn't mandated or wasn't done as required.

Comment Re:Translation (Score 1) 203

It depends on the version. VS 2010 was solid, but MS royally screwed something up in VS 2012 when they rewrote the IDE, as it was highly unstable (especially with large projects), with VS 2013 just a bit better. VS 2015 has been quite stable, fortunately, and hopefully VS 2017 will continue the trend.

Comment Re:$500 is Shocking??? (Score 1) 195

Agreed. Submitter should think about it this way. How much per-year does a typical programmer earn? Does $500 or even $6K for a perpetual license software for a tool said developer will probably use every day for several years sound expensive? It's stupidly inexpensive, relatively speaking, to the total cost of that programmer's general overhead.

It's a decent chunk of money for an individual developer, but then again, they can simply use the Community Edition for free.

Comment Re:Have to rule out Chrome (Score 1) 160

I think it would be obvious why Google would want to provide a free web browser to its products (some might mistakenly call them "users"). They want to ensure their products have safe, secure, and functional access to their services, and controlling the browser means they get to control that experience to a larger degree.

But I highly doubt Chrome spies on its products. Why? Because there's no need for the browser itself to snoop when 3rd party cookies do the job just as well "legitimately". A huge percentage of the world's websites use Google services in some fashion (like ads, analytics, etc), meaning they all report to Google when a product visits said website. Google then builds an advertising profile from the products collective web browsing habits, and sells targeted advertising based on that profile. Best of all, from Google's perspective, it works equally well with any browser.

Comment Re:Tabs v. Spaces (Score 2) 300

Even better yes please to an entire ecosystem of languages. Its one of the fundamental flaws of software engineering.

At work, I write game and engine code in C++, some platform-specific Mac stuff in Objective-C, tools in C#, all managed by a build system written in Java, customized with Python, and Bash and Powershell scripts, with a web interface in Javascript. And that's just the languages I've interacted with myself.

Domain-specific or specialty languages work great in other industries, so don't blame it on "software engineering". This is problem for web developers.

Comment Re:Ars is not the only one (Score 1) 59

Oh, I absolutely agree. Given experience with glitchy hardware, unexpectedly bad games, and so forth, my policy has been for quite a while to avoid preorders, and instead to wait a while for most new games and consoles to let the reviews all trickle out, not just from reviewers, but impressions by normal gamers as well.

Comment Re:Ars is not the only one (Score 2) 59

Had this (and other) reviews even been *slightly* less positive, I probably would have not bothered with the Switch. This may change my mind, as Zelda is a long-time favorite of mine. I'll probably wait a while and see if there are at least a few other great games to pick up before I commit.

I only ended up buying a couple of decent games on the Wii, and didn't feel like the WiiU was worth the upgrade. I *loathed* the motion control gimmick stuck to nearly every games on the Wii, and was worried about the gimmicky nature of this console as well (so far the console itself isn't reviewing all that well).

Well, we'll see. I guess I remain on the fence.

Comment Re:Err, guys? (Score 1) 644

I don't really care if people want to believe this worst-case scenario, but I start caring very much when they start recommending policies driven by nothing but pure speculation at best. After all, we all know how easy it is to accurately predict the future, right?

The undertext of these articles is promoting taxes on robots (or "robots paying taxes"). Imagine where the internet would be if politicians decided to tax the crap out of it in its early days, for every anticipated postal worker laid off because of e-mail, or librarian because of the Web. Do we really want to go there with a new technology that's still in its infancy?

Comment Re:Not foolproof (Score 1) 54

I'm not asking people to agree on every contentious issue. Yes, there will be some variance on what "be civil" means, but working in a group also requires a bit of tolerance. That's part of peacefully coexisting in a diverse workforce. No, I'm not talking about tolerating blatantly racist or sexist behavior, but recognizing that, so long as there is no ill intent, we should be willing to forgive minor trespasses or foibles.

My concern with creating a list of all principles, rules, prohibitions, etc, is that it appeals to rules lawyers, and no one else. I'm pretty sure Uber has a big list of these rules and prohibitions, but look at what that place is (allegedly) like, especially for female engineers. In short, it feels a bit to me like a feel-good measure that doesn't actually prevent bullying and backstabbing, and in some cases, even provides the tools for doing so.

I don't actually oppose codes of conduct per se, despite my Devil's advocate position. I just think recently that they've taken on a life of their own, and have gotten too complicated or convoluted, and in the process undermines their purpose. You've probably heard of this line in the Open Code of Conduct:

Our open source community prioritizes marginalized people’s safety over privileged people’s comfort.

I think it's inappropriate for a code of people to define and divide people into "marginalized people" and "privileged people". Are people surprised then, when the Code of Conduct itself becomes controversial? This line is, by its own admission, quite divisive.

Ubuntu's, on the other hand, reads like this:

Be considerate

Our work will be used by other people, and we in turn will depend on the work of others. Any decision we take will affect users and colleagues, and we should consider them when making decisions.

Be respectful

Disagreement is no excuse for poor manners. We work together to resolve conflict, assume good intentions and do our best to act in an empathic fashion. We don't allow frustration to turn into a personal attack. A community where people feel uncomfortable or threatened is not a productive one.

Take responsibility for our words and our actions

We can all make mistakes; when we do, we take responsibility for them. If someone has been harmed or offended, we listen carefully and respectfully, and work to right the wrong.

And then goes on for a few thousand more words... But one thing I appreciate is they try to offer advice on how to achieve technical excellence as well as inter-group harmony, which I think makes sense for an open-source project.

If you feel you must have a Code of Conduct, it seems better to affirm the positive attributes to which community members should strive, rather than listing all the ways one person can be horrible to another person, like the Open Code of Conduct, which defines "harassment" with a litany of examples.

Comment Re:a Code of Conduct is a weapon (Score 1) 54

I understand the necessity of a Code of Conduct for a business that hires employees. Because federal laws, and lawsuits, and all that other fun stuff.

I don't understand why a programming language, as a recent example, requires a Code of Conduct. If you want your official forums to be civil, than enforce civility. Why on earth would you write up a multi-page document explicitly listing every little prohibition and affirmation, unless it's just for virtue signalling?

Comment Re:Not foolproof (Score 4, Insightful) 54

I see they're recommending a "Code of Conduct" for open source projects. How else could we possibly get along with one another if all the rules of behavior aren't spelled out in the most minute details. Generally speaking, all of those boil down to "Be civil" anyhow, just expressed in a few thousand more words.

Is it really not adequate these days for a project or community to just tell everyone to "be civil", to enforce that civility with common sense, and leave it at that?

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